A request to make Shreveport casinos exempt from the public smoking ban issued by the city council has been shelved. If plans remain the same the smoking ban will take effect on August 1.
Two casinos will be subject to the ban, Sam’s Town and El Dorado.
The amendment, which was proposed by Councilman James Flurry, was discussed during a City Council meeting today. In the initial vote the decision to allow smoking in casinos won by four to three. However, after further discussions and talks by the group Americans for Non-Smokers’Rights, the issue was shelved.
This discussion comes after Ordinance No.51, the Smoke-Free Air Act, which was passed in June 2020. The legislation is set to ban smoking in bars, casinos and gaming facilities from August 1. The law originally was set to come into effect in August 2020, but was delayed due to the Covid-19 pandemic.
Councilman Flurry opposes the banning of smoking in Shreveport casinos as he believes it will cost the city business and in turn jobs. He claimed patrons would sooner gamble in nearby Bossier City than abide by a smoking ban.
However, Reagan Carter, a spokesperson for Smoke-Free Louisiana took issue with the suggestion that smoking bans reduce income, calling the assertion “insidious and insensitive.”
She added: “Competitive smoke-free gaming facilities all across America are attracting new customers and finding their employees are healthier and happier since the clean-air policies have been in place.”
There currently are 120 smoke-free casinos across the United States. The newly opened Resorts World Las Vegas has a smoking ban across its property, but still allows it on the casino floor.